NEW YORK (Dec. 16)
An Auschwitz survivor told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency that Dr. Josef Mengele, the notorious death camp doctor, is apparently still living in Paraguay while the government of that country takes no steps to extradite him or even acknowledges his presence But Simon Wiesenthal, the Nazi-hunter who has offered a $50,000 reward for information leading to Mengele’s capture, said in Vienna Friday that he has reliable information that the war criminal is now hiding in a colony of former Nazis in Dignidad in southern Chile.
The survivor, Alex Dekel, 48, was about to undergo experimental surgery at Mengele’s infamous clinic at Auschwitz when the death camp was liberated by Allied forces at the end of World War Il. Mengele, Known to camp inmates as the “Angel of Death,” was responsible for the murders of some half million persons at Auschwitz, including 200,000 children. Many were victims of inhuman medical experiments.
According to Wiesenthal, who heads the Nazi war crimes documentation center in Vienna, the Chilean government is well aware of Mengele’s presence but so far has refused to respond to an extradition request by the West German government He said he had learned from three independent sources that Mengele fled to Chile after the Paraguayan government revoked his citizenship last August.
Paraguay acted, apparently, after warrants for Mengele’s arrest were issued by West German embassies throughout Latin America. Dekel claimed, however. that Mengele is still in Paraguay.
On a recent trip to the U.S. Wiesenthal told the JTA that Mengele still tops his “wanted” list of Nazi war criminals. He said he hoped to double the $50,000 reward soon and will offer an additional $10,000 to the welfare fund of the police department in whatever country Mengele is arrested Wiesenthal said that Mengele now “Knows that his friends will sell him out and he will get nervous and make mistakes. He runs from country to country near Paraguay,” he said at the time.